Africa was well known for decency; clothes were used for a covering. I used to think itâ€™s only mad men and women who move about town in tattered clothes. I used to see children and market people make mockery of ladies when they dress in very seductive manner. Boys were brought up to know that the best form of dressing is to have their shirts tucked in properly into their pants. Indecency was seen as taboo in those days when Africans were Africans.
Parents were more after the name of their children and the image of their family. Parents, in those days, wanted to know how their children made whichever money they had. I remember my father asking questions which church members were made to answer on how they got their wealth. I remember my grandmother telling us not to follow certain people because of their ill-gotten wealth.
The story is now different in my Africa. I donâ€™t know what has led us to this sorry state. I donâ€™t know how we got ourselves into the mess we are in. It is no longer a matter of image and name that must be protected; it is now all about how many cars you have parked in your garage and the amount of money in your account.
The pride of a woman used to be in her ability to keep herself pure for her husband. Chastity was admired and honoured above every other virtue in a woman. This is a generation in which morals have been thrown to the dogs. Chastity has suddenly become a vice instead of virtue. Girls now see their friends as fools just because they are decent. I have a forum on Facebook for singles and I can tell you that from what I hear singles say, this generation is far from redemption. Our society has suddenly become the Sodom and Gomorrah of our time.
Boys, even men, now wear rags as clothes all in the name of fashion. Sagging is now the order of the day and I keep saying it that real men donâ€™t sag. What will make a normal human being pull his boxers out of the trousers and proudly walk along the road in the company of his parents? Our hip-hop artistes have suddenly become role models to our children. Nollywood stars (and moon) who jump from one manâ€™s bed to the other and who have no regard for morals are now role models to the youths. The amazing thing is that they donâ€™t even look out for the decent artistes, but those who are constantly on red carpet and who make money, not from acting, but with their body. People, especially young girls, now run into Nollywood and actually get lead roles, not because they are talented and qualified for those roles, but because of their wayward nature. Celebrity has suddenly shifted from touching lives to how many men you are able to sleep with and how many married women you are able to take to bed.
We have found ourselves in a situation where we believe so much in compromise. Compromise is good; I donâ€™t disagree with you, but I keep saying there are things and areas of our lives where it is absolutely unnecessary. Letâ€™s take for instance the case of homosexuality; what will make me, an African, accept it as something natural and commendable? I donâ€™t care how you feel about this, but I am in agreement with President Olusegun Obasanjo when he said that homosexuality (lesbianism inclusive) is against African culture and should be made a punishable offence.
Parents now send their children to a particular school, not because of the academic and moral standing of the school, but for their social status. How many parents still consider the future of their children before choosing their schools? We have suddenly imbibed the western culture of not flogging children even in schools. I beat my children occasionally and I donâ€™t think there is any law in Africa that can make me stop that. Children are now being taught in school that no teacher or parent has the right to flog them; what a shame.
Our pastors and Imams are not free and I keep wondering what becomes of a nation and continent when those who should be crying out for the destruction coming upon the land suddenly find themselves guilty of what they are called and ordained to speak against. Our religious leaders are now seen as thieves and dignified fraudsters. Who will now cry for the redemption of the land?
Our politicians go the extra mile and do all sorts just to be elected or in the case of Nigeria, selected. They take oaths in some powerful shrines and commit their souls to the devil all for power. Is it possible for us to move forward as a nation when our leaders are mostly blood sucking beasts? How can we have peace in our land when sacrifices are made to unknown gods with blood of innocent citizens shed just for power?
What is happening along the Lagos-Ore road? Is it that our President and his advisers have not heard of the lives of Nigerians being wasted daily along that road? Have Babalakin and Bi-Courtney Company suddenly turned deaf? Is it yet another way to continuously suck blood of innocent men, women, and children of Nigeria?
Our leaders have failed and so have we. We have failed in our homes as we no longer desire to pass down the envied African heritage down to our children. The schools have failed to educate our children the African way. Our churches and mosques, as Jesus said, have suddenly turned to den of robbers. The shameless leaders we have donâ€™t even care if we exist and as far as they are concerned, our people dying daily along those bad roads are nothing but chickens and they need the blood for their stay in power. The most painful thing is that we complain and cry out while they are busy looting us dry and thinking of better strategies for money laundering.
Who will save us from this mess? Who will open his ears to the cry of the masses and become a deliverer for our nation? Who will be that teacher and school proprietor to stand against the western education system that we have imbibed? Where is that preacher who will stand as the lonely voice in the wilderness crying out for lost souls? Is there any leader who will genuinely feel the pain of the masses and instead of flogging us with scorpions and iron brings us closer to his or her heart and help save Nigeria?
I have looked around, but I canâ€™t see anyone to fill the vacuum. I have looked to see if there is anyone with the heart for the poor and less privileged; there is no one. But I know that you can make the difference if you want to. You can stand out wherever you are; you can make a difference in your own little way. If we all can start doing something positive to affect our communities while ignoring our leaders (nothing good is coming from them), our nation will be a better place to be.
You cannot do anything for your community, nation, and the continent until your heart is filled with love. Love is the only thing that can bring the difference that a dying world needs.